Baked Saffron Pancakes & Forest Berries

A while back we spent a weekend on the island Gotland in southern Sweden. One of their traditional dishes is baked saffron pancake with whipped cream and dewberry jam. The pancakes are made on rice porridge, mixed almonds, whole milk, eggs, sugar, flour and saffron. They taste incredible, but won’t win any healthiest cake awards. Whenever we come across a great tasting dessert we always ask ourselves: “How could we do this our way?“, and last week we decided to give this one a try.

We have replaced quite a few ingredients in our recipe. They are significantly healthier now, and as far as we can remember they taste quite similar to the original. Maybe a little more dense, but on the other hand you can now eat them as breakfast as well, even though they were originally intended as a dessert. That’s always a good quality from a dessert! The saffron, the pieces of almonds and the shredded carrots are just great together. Warm, sweet and saffrony.

Since dewberries almost only grow on Gotland we instead made a jam out of the only berries that you can get in Sweden this time of the year. Frozen. During the summer we fill our home with as many fresh berries as we can get hold of (and afford). Nothing beats fresh berries, right? But frozen berries are not to be underestimated. They are both beautiful and a real life saver during the winter. Make sure they are unsweetened (in Sweden most berries are). We made a 15-minute-jam with a bag of frozen forest berries (with the beautiful Italian name “Frutti di Bosco”) and only sweetened it with some dried prunes. Ridiculously simple. If you have the pancakes for dessert, a dollop of mascarpone cheese tastes a lot better than whipped cream. You could also go for some turkish yogurt.

Swedish Saffron Pancakes
Makes 6 tartlets 

1 large ripe banana
4 eggs
_ cup (1,2 dl) soy milk or milk of choice
_ cup (1,2 dl) rice flour or flour of choice
1 tsp baking powder
a pinch of salt
0,5 g saffron (1 sachet)
2 carrots
_ cup (1,2 dl) almonds

coconut oil for the tartlets

Making the pancakes: Preheat the oven to 350F (175°C). Mash the banana with a fork, add the eggs and whisk together. Add soy milk, rice flour, baking powder, salt and saffron and stir around. Shred the carrots and chop the almonds coarsely , add to the mixture and stir around. Grease the inside of 1 large baking tin or 6, 5-inch tartlet tins with coconut oil. Pour the batter into the tins and bake for about 20 minutes. Serve the pancakes while they are warm, together with forest berry jam and a dollop of mascarpone cheese.

Forest Berry Jam
Makes 1 small jar 

2 tbsp water
1 lime, juice
15 dried prunes, finely chopped
250 g frozen berries
1/2 tsp ground cardamom

Heat water, lime juice and chopped dried fruit in a small pot over medium heat. Let gently simmer for 5 minutes while stirring. Then add  berries and cardamom and simmer for 10 more minutes, stir occasionally. Let cool slightly before serving.

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